Sam Berger

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For other people of the same name, see Samuel Berger (disambiguation).
Sam Berger
Date of birth: (1900-01-01)January 1, 1900
Place of birth: Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
Date of death: July 24, 1992(1992-07-24) (aged 92)
Place of death: Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
Career information
Position(s): Owner
President
Organizations
As administrator:
1930-1968
1969–1981
Ottawa Rough Riders
Montreal Alouettes
Career stats

Samuel "Sam" Berger, CM FRSC QC (January 1, 1900 – July 24, 1992) was a Canadian owner of the Canadian Football League's Ottawa Rough Riders and Montreal Alouettes and president of the CFL.

A lawyer by profession, he was an early football fan who became involved with the Ottawa Rough Riders team as its legal advisor, president, and as an owner. He served three, three-year terms as the club's president during which time the team made it to the Grey Cup seven times, winning the championship on four occasions.

Active in the Ottawa community, Berger twice ran for mayor of the city, losing to Charlotte Whitton in the 1960 and 1962 elections.

In 1969 Sam Berger sold his shares in the Ottawa club and donated the proceeds to charitable causes. He then purchased the troubled Montreal Alouettes franchise and in the ensuing twelve years built it into a powerhouse that made six Grey Cup appearances and won it three times.

He was President of the Canadian Football League in 1964 and 1971 and as an attorney and owner played a key role in putting together the League's first television contract.

He retired in 1976 as the active owner of Alouettes, handing over the presidency to his eldest son, David.[1] On March 6, 1981, Berger sold the Alouettes to Vancouver businessman Nelson Skalbania.

In 1986, Sam Berger was made a Member of the Order of Canada, Canada's highest civilian honour, for "his commitments to the sport and to the City of Montreal".[2] In 1993 he was inducted into the Canadian Football Hall of Fame.

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